Quick Gift Tags {Last Minute Christmas Tip}

Monday, December 22, 2014

It's officially last-minute to get things done for Christmas! But that doesn't mean that things can't still get done with a little bit of style! I want to share a quick tip for the last-minute Christmas people out there!

I know a lot of people keep gift shopping until the last weekend before Christmas... which means that wrapping presents is truly the last thing on the list. I have a great tip for finding (cheap) trendy and quick gift tags! All you have to do is find scrapbook paper that is designed as journaling cards or subway(ish) art. 

For example, I picked up this great We R Memory Keepers page in their Silver & Gold line (it's called December 25th):

It was only $1.10 at my local scrapbooking store (Scraps Galore) and I will have about 30 unique and trendy gift tags for this season. Just cut out the design you want to use, and punch a hole in it or use tape to attach it to the gift.

The first gift I used the tag on, I attached with curling ribbon...

And on another gift, I taped the tag to the handle of the gift bag...

I wrote the to/from on the back of each tag.

Here are a few other good options of scrapbooking paper to be used as gift tags - 

Simple Stories - Cozy Christmas
Christmas in Gold Journal Cards FREE
Christmas in Gold Journaling Cards

Happy last-minute Christmasing (my word)!

P.S. This post is the 400th (!!!) on the blog! Thank you to everyone who has stopped by once or many, many times to show their interest and support in It's Always Ruetten! Thank you, thank you!

Bright As A Fully Lit Menorah...

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Nothing like waiting until the last minute, right?! Tonight marks the sixth night of Hanukkah, which means I should have made this card at least a week ago! But I sat on it, and I have to say I'm not sorry because I love how the card turned out!

This is an extra-special card because it is for my mom! I planned on using blue-tones and was excited to find the blue and brown paisley paper, since my mom love paisley print.

After looking on Pinterest for Hanukkah sayings and cards for inspiration, I found the great sentiment that I used on this card. I actually designed the file and used my sketch pens to write it.

I added some sequins and turned it into a shaker card. To put the finishing touch on it, I cut out a gold glitter Star of David.

I used the Mojo Monday-376 Sketch Layout as inspiration for this card.

The nightly lighting of the menorah is a wonderful experience. I know I have fully enjoyed lighting mine the last five nights. I have great neon candles and love watching the wax drip down and dry on the menorah.

For those of you celebrating the Miracle of Lights... Happy Hanukkah to you and yours!

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Merry & Bright + FREE Christmas Cut File

Thursday, December 18, 2014

I can't believe we are officially one week away from Christmas and already on night three of Hanukkah! December has just flown by! My office Christmas party is tomorrow night, although, except for decorations, it doesn't much feel like Christmas around here. We are on pace to have the warmest and wettest (rain) December on record! All this Montana girl wants for Christmas is some snow that will stick around!

Merry & Bright + FREE Christmas Cut File

Over the weekend, I had a nice time just staying in, not running any errands or being in any stores. It was a nice change of pace. I also spent some time making a few cards (of course) and even created a layered Christmas bulb cut file that is on this card! 

I knew that if I just waited patiently, the inspiration would come for this Wanna Sketch layout from Dahlhouse Designs... and sure enough it did! But I couldn't find a cut file on Pinterest or in the Silhouette Store that met my needs... so I made one myself!

Here is the sketch:


And here are the Christmas lights I made:

How cute are these vintage glittery Christmas lights that are made out of paper?! They are actually a Silhouette cut file... and it's FREE to download from It's Always Ruetten. {Just click the picture to get to the download.}

The lights are actually a layered cut file. The glittery part is double-sided adhesive that I sprinkled loose glitter on. I LOVE how they turned out! Get your free cut file download here:

You will want to ungroup and first use a pen to sketch the threaded part at the top of the light, then cut out the entire light. Then separately cut out the bulb portion for the glitter (or colored card stock).

I love the vintage Christmas lights and am excited that I was able to incorporate them in to a card!

What is one of your favorite old-timey Christmas things?

{I party with these blogs!}

The Juicy Lucy of Cookies {Cookie Recipe Swap}

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Hey guys! Today I'm participating in a fun cookie swap with other bloggers! I was paired with Julie from Willow Bird Baking to swap cookie recipes. I sent her the recipe for Pam's Ice Box Cookies (care of Morgan)... and she sent me the recipe for her Pumpkin Cheesecake Stuffed Snickerdoodles aka the Juicy Lucy of Cookies! 

We both made and baked each others cookies (along with all of the other bloggers who swapped) and today is the day we are sharing our results! Well... that was the plan, but as the saying goes... the best laid plans of mice and men often go awry. Julie emailed me last night that her oven was on the fritz so she wasn't able to get her cookies baked for today. What a pain in the butt! I hope her oven gets fixed soon! UPDATE: The amazing Julie pulled the baking off in time and shared Pam's Icebox Cookies on her blog this morning!

Pumpkin Cheesecake Stuffed Snickerdoodles... the perfect cookie for a holiday cookie swap!

These are totally indulgent and decadent cookies. I can only imagine making these during the holidays... and limiting how many I eat. They are actually so rich that I can only eat about half of one at a sitting and have only eaten about two cookies. My co-workers are so lucky that I brought these to the office for them to enjoy!

Before reading the recipe, just take a deep breath and remember that these are a treat!

Pumpkin Cheesecake Stuffed Snickerdoodles
Yield: 35-40 large cookies


Pumpkin Cheesecake-
2 cups white chocolate chips (one package)
1 cup pumpkin puree
1 1/2 cups finely ground gingersnaps
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
Pinch of orange extract (I used juice from a Cutie)
1 (8 oz) package cream cheese softened

Snickerdoodle Dough-
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup vegetable oil
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 cup powdered sugar
2 large eggs
4 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cream of tartar
1/2 tsp salt

1/2 cup granulated sugar + 1 Tbsp cinnamon for rolling cookies

Start by making the pumpkin cheesecake filling...
1. Melt the white chocolate chips in the microwave. I heated mine in 30-second increments stirring after each 30-second time.
2. Once melted, set chocolate aside to cool.
3. Grind the gingersnaps (in a food processor or blender) and smash up graham crackers in a zip top bag.
4. Combine the pumpkin, gingersnaps, graham cracker crumbs, powdered sugar, cinnamon, orange extract, and cream cheese.
5. Add the melted white chocolate chips and combine until well mixed.
6. Place the mixture to the refrigerator to chill.
... Now on to the snickerdoodle dough ...
7. Mix the butter, vegetable oil, sugar, powdered sugar, and eggs in a large bowl.
8. In a separate bowl, mix the flour, baking soda, cream of tartar, and salt.
9. Add the dry into the wet slowly in four or five parts... mix until just combined.
10. Place the finished dough in the refrigerator to chill.
11. While the cookie dough chills, take out the cheesecake mixture and roll into balls (about 3/4 inch) and place the balls on a wax paper lined tray and place in the freezer (covered) to firm up (about 1 hour).
12. Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees.
13. Once chilled, remove from the freezer... and remove dough from the refrigerator.
14. In a small bowl, mix together the granulated sugar and cinnamon for rolling cookies.
15. Scoop out a small amount of dough (about a tablespoon).
16. Place a pumpkin ball in the center of the dough and form the dough around the ball until it is covered (add more dough if needed).
17. Roll in the cinnamon and sugar.
18. Place on a greased baking sheet.
19. Repeat, placing cookies about 3 inches apart.
20. Bake 12-15 minutes or until edges are brown and tops have just started cracking open and place remaining dough in the refrigerator and pumpkin balls in the freezer until needed.
21 Enjoy!

Indulgent Pumpkin Stuffed Snickerdoodles!

Big thanks to Abbey at The Cards We Drew for co-hosting the 3rd Annual Christmas Cookie Recipe Swap! Now head on over to Willow Bird Baking and check out Julie's cookies (soon... I promise)!

{I party with these blogs!}
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